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April 2014
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Get ready for the D.O.T. "sustainable streets"…just in time…for 2030?

I hate to be the ultimate cynic, but its really hard to get excited about the D.O.T’s new plans which are supposed to be finished by 2030. Wow, I’ll be 60 years and in desperate need of bike lanes if not a walker. At least they are doing something over there in the shadow of the congestion pricing defeat.

Just days before bike month the Department of Transportation has unveiled their 72 page plan on how to make the streets safer and create more infrastructure for bikes and public transportation.

Here is the flashy graphic filled plan for, “Sustainable Streets”

and here is a video from streetfilms of Janette Sadik-Kahn, NYC DOT Commissioner, annoucing the plan at the Municipal Art Society.

Here is Brian Lehrer having a love in with Paul Steeley White, executive director Transportation Alternative, on Wednesday’s show, talking about the new sustainable streets plan.

To be fair, the D.O.T. is taking an aggressive role on making positive sustainable changes to NYC for pedestrians and bikers. Hopefully the NYPD will cooperate.

Video that rates your lock up.

Clarence Eckerson, Jr. of Streetfilms recently made a video about two critics who are out to jack your bike. Well, there out to point out how easy, or not it would be to steel your ride or parts of it.

Hal Ruzal, top notch bike mechanic at Bicycle Habitat knows a few things about locking bikes and along with Kerri Martin, founder of the bicycle church, they’re out to see if people have learned a thing or two from the last time they did this in 2003.

May 3rd…New Haven.

T-Town Swap Meet is Saturday.

The East Coast’s largest bicycle swap meet is this Saturday May 3rd. in Trexlertown Pennsylvania.
The 6th annual Spring Bicycle Swap Meet will be held at the Valley Preferred Cycling Center on Saturday, May 3! Celebrate at our German themed event while browsing the best deals in cycling and fitness merchandise. This event will run from 8:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. and is open to the public for a small fee of $5. Enjoy festive German themed food and drinks along with our traditional fare at the Breakaway Cafe located in the Cycling Center VeloPlaza.

Check here for directions.

Lord of the Chain Rings

Tod of suckapants sent me a link to this video:

Ah, exciting times…Bike Month is just around the corner!

First off, On Sunday, I saw this bike in Park Slope on 5th Ave. Who’s bike is that? Seriously tall, nice work.

Ok, May is almost here and that means:

Lots of great bike events including this thing called Critical Mass, that the D.O.T. seems to sponsor, because once again its in the Bike Month Calender.

So this month when you’re on critical mass and the scooter cop is giving you a hassle about needing permits, just quote them this blurb from the bike month website:

“Bike Month celebrates the fun, convenience and ease of cycling in NYC. Cycling is good for you, good for the environment and good for New York City. Whether you are one of the city’s 120,000 everyday cyclists, a weekend cyclist or just thinking about bicycling to work, Bike Month has an event for you.”

All kidding aside, lets really try and make the MAY “Bike-Month” Critical Mass a Big one!

So I have some good news and some bad news…The good news is that it looks like a city in America is going to kick off a bike sharing program starting in May. (did I mention that was bike month) Washington DC is the spot and you can read about it here in this NY times article which came out in Sunday’s paper, written by Bernie Becker.

Photo by Ed Alcock for the New York Times.

The bad news is, much like the very successful bike sharing program in France, which the DC one is modeled after…someone has to pay for this and that generally means through advertising of a major corporation.

The even worse news is in DC, its sponsored by: Clear Channel, who monopolizes our airwaves with watered down top 40 and supports Right-Wing politicians…Oh yeah and they banned the Dixie Chicks when they spoke out against the war. But somehow they like bicycles…or is it money! Clear Channel, just so happens to own 90% of our outdoor advertising. Hopefully you see where I am going with this. Here is a simple equasion. They like A and they control what you see…they don’t like B, therefore you don’t see B.

Why can’t this be sponsored by the city who believes in something like this: Cycling is good for you, good for the environment and good for “Fill-in-the-Blank” City.

Here is a blog that has been doing a lot of work covering Bike sharing around the world and what is starting to happen here in America.

Kirk Dungan…Anchorage bike messenger.

and the only bike messenger. Check out this video of three bikers in Alaska.

Part of a History Channel series…”Tougher in Alaska”. Damn straight.

Great video of the April Critical Mass 2008

Made by Chris Ryan.

Couple of ways to recycle.

Now the last thing you need is another person telling you how you can make a difference in making the planet more “Green.” How to properly recycle in the work place while the janitor dumps all the white paper into the regular trash thus rendering the giant corporation you work for exempt from having to make a difference and you feeling guilty and thinking…”why bother.” Why should I swap all the light bulbs in my house when I just bought them at Walmart and all their 10 gazillion stores are using millions of energy wasting fluorescents fixtures?

I guess we all have to figure out how to make a difference in our own way. Here are a few ways of helping out locally and perhaps ways of recycling you hadn’t heard of.

This weekend and Monday, Everyone’s favorite mac store, Tekserve along with the Lower East Side Ecology Center, is offering free electronic recycling. Bring down your old hard drives, DVD players, monitors, etc. to there store at 119 West 23rd street. Sunday, April 27th from 10am through 4pm and Monday, April 28th from 4pm to 7pm. Win a chance for a free Ipod and Mac computer and rid of your old gear the ecco-friendly way.

3rliving, cool ecco-products store has unique recycle year round. This funky store in Park Slope (276L 5th Ave) will gladly take your used CD’s, DVDS, Cell phone parts and even batteries.

Blessing of the Bikes 08

Ah yes…it must be close to May, because its time for the 10th annual, Blessing of the Bicycles.”
I’ve never understood this event but I feel obliged to mention it mainly because it kicks off the, “Bike Riding Season,” what ever that means.
Photo by: A. Courtney

Every year, hundreds of cyclists file into the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and have a Reverend say a few words and sprinkle them with holy water. Somehow this is to protect them from dangers of the open road as the warm weather brings more of us bikers out to the streets…and they say critical mass makes us look silly?

Maybe they should just call it the Blessing of the Helmets or the Blessing of creating more bike lanes. Maybe, a prayer that some day our confused administration will realize what an efficient, healthy and environmentally sustainable mode of transportation the bicycle really is. This event is immediatly followed by the more fire and brimstone version of the:

Burning of the CAR.

actually thats a photo from I dream Awake, of a vehicle that didn’t get enough holy water as it burned up on the entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge.

Here is a story on the blessing of the bikes on NY1.

How ever you are blessed…Ride Safe.